Poetry

I’m sorry
Really, I’m trying
I think maybe that’s part of the problem
Because the earth’s too dry
For what I’m growing here
And I might fall through the cracks

I thought if I gave you my voice
I’d be amplified
But instead I find myself
Buried, dirt in my mouth
And I want to scream
Is anybody listening?
But it’s uncouth to do so, isn’t it?

I’ve gone through so much thread
Stringing myself back together
But I’m lumpy in all the wrong places
And I’m hard to love
And soft in ways that make me
Want to bleed out all over the floor
If you scratch at the wound
I’ll shiver for you

Do you think I was born this way
Or was it something I carved out?
There’s so much black in my eyeline
And so much water in my lungs
I’ve tried to swim but I like the way sinking feels
And I’m not going to lie and tell you otherwise

So if I’m there in the static
Lean forward and try to make me out
A tiny black and white excuse of a boy
I lost my best friend to
The heartattack promise of a kinder world
So maybe I’m not as solid as I used to be
That’s on me, I know

The mirror’s blurry
But the glasses make me someone else
So I guess I’ll make do
With seeing myself through you

Poetry

I broke the heads off
All my sunflowers
I didn’t like
That they were taller than me

I think you knew before
You met me that there was
Something wrong about
The way that I breathed

I’m sorry, I built myself
Up and I’m carved out
Of sand and
The tide is coming in

The world’s on fire
But I’ve been burning for years
My skin scalds red hot
Keeps me safe keeps me warm

I believed in reprieves and
The space of not being
Needed or wanted for
Anything other than love

Before realising that
That hurt the most that that
Was the most broken jagged piece
Of glass between my toes

I stare so hard I think
My eyes will turn white
Like milk and all I’ll see is
What I’ve been endless nothing now never dark

Leaving was an apocalypse of
My own design and all
That remains is the marrow
In my bones ’til you suck that dry too

There will be flowers again when
Winter turns to spring I won’t
See them but I’m
Assured they’ll be there

This place is a prison and I’m
Only operating one small portion
Of all the clanking machinery that
Drones on and on in the background like dulled screams

I’m a virus and
I’ll infect you too
Mask yourself and quarantine
The very bones of your spine

I’m sorry I couldn’t be beautiful
For you, I built a pyre but it’s damp
The kindling won’t light there
Isn’t anything more than sparks in the night

Salt sea air and I have that in common
The cries of the gulls above me
Six feet under and breathing in dirt
Didn’t I tell you I was doing well?

I haven’t been myself lately
I think it’s something in
The way the floods roll in
And in miniature oceans
We pile up our belongings
And pray that we don’t lose
Like maybe there’s something to lose
Like maybe there’s something
Like maybe there’s something
Like maybe there’s –

Poetry

Sorry, I know we’re running out of time
The planet’s on fire
And you’re busy pouring petrol
The flames are beautiful as they lick around our twisted limbs
Aren’t they?
Carbon turns to carbon turns black grey ash
And I breathe you in as you breathe me out
Smear soot fingerprints on the glass
As it smashes when the heat forces its way through
Billow up into the atmosphere
Smoke sharp in your lungs
I’m burning up and you’re smiling and I think:
“oh, I guess this is what you meant,
when you said that I could be lovely”
I turn through colours blue yellow white
A birthday candle hushed out by the breeze
Can you smell the death of me? Of this?
Kiss me hard and scorch me like you’re cauterising a wound
I can’t feel my tongue anymore as it makes its way around words I wish I’d said
“run away with me, run away with me, run away with me”
You laugh like an explosion and it pierces like shrapnel
And it’s in the bones of me now
“I chose you” you say voice nearly lost to the wind
“I chose you because you had long since washed up on the soar and dried out, the salt of you shaken away”
“I chose you” you say
“because you looked back”
You strike the match and it bends my spine like willow
“You were perfect” you assure me
And as I’m eaten away
I repeat that to myself
“You were perfect”
Oh.

Is this my fault?

Poetry, Writing

My god, did anyone ever tell you
How you kick in your sleep?
Or that you snore like you smoke
Forty a day?
You keep me awake, and I would
Begrudge you that –
Were it not for the opportunity
To watch you dream.

Books, Uncategorized, Writing

htbainsta

Poe’s voice is confident, moving and often funny, as she reveals to us a very personal account of autism, mental illness, gender and sexual identity.

As we follow Charlotte’s journey through school and college, we become as awestruck by her extraordinary passion for life as by the enormous privations that she must undergo to live it. From food and fandom, to body modification and comic conventions, Charlotte’s experiences through the torments of schooldays and young adulthood leave us with a riot of conflicting emotions: horror, empathy, despair, laugh-out-loud amusement and, most of all, respect. For Charlotte, autism is a fundamental aspect of her identity and art. She addresses her reader in a voice that is direct, sharply clever and ironic. She witnesses her own behaviour with a wry humour as she sympathises with those who care for her, yet all the while challenging the neurotypical narratives of autism as something to be ‘fixed’.

‘I wanted to show the side of autism that you don’t find in books and on Facebook. My story is about survival, fear and, finally, hope. There will be parts that make you want to cover your eyes, but I beg you to read on, because if I can change just one person’s perceptions, if I can help one person with autism feel like they’re less alone, then this will all be worth it.’

Punctuated by her poetry, this is an exuberant, inspiring, life-changing insight into autism from a viewpoint almost entirely missing from public discussion.

Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/How-Autistic-Charlotte-Amelia-Poe/dp/1912408325/ref=sr_1_1?keywords=how+to+be+autistic&qid=1555582434&s=gateway&sr=8-1

Amazon US: https://www.amazon.com/How-Autistic-Charlotte-Amelia-Poe/dp/1912408325/ref=sr_1_fkmrnull_1?keywords=how+to+be+autistic+charlotte+amelia+poe&qid=1555582817&s=gateway&sr=8-1-fkmrnull

Waterstones: https://www.waterstones.com/book/how-to-be-autistic/charlotte-amelia-poe/9781912408320

Barnes & Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/how-to-be-autistic-charlotte-amelia-poe/1130419987?ean=9781912408320

Myriad Editions (publisher): https://myriadeditions.com/books/how-to-be-autistic/

Poetry, Uncategorized, Writing

I will be the hollow tree

Standing in the forest sunlight dappling through my leaves

My insides exposed for all to see

Yes, I think I like that

 

I will be the beach cave

Drip drop of salt water like sound colouring sight

Stand inside me and ask what made me

Yes, I think I like that

 

I will be the long abandoned burrow

Once home to the woodland’s guardian souls

Half caved in and morning dew damp

Yes, I think I like that

 

I will be this body

Staples digging into flesh

Hospital bed and smell of antiseptic

Yes, I think I like that

Poetry, Uncategorized, Writing

I haven’t felt safe in over twenty years

That feels strange to admit

There’s a casual acceptance to a lifetime of fears

“Oh, come on, get over it.”

Like,

Maybe I don’t want this but I don’t know the alternative

Like I’ve been blinkered and I can only see straight ahead

It tells me this is the only way to live

“Stay home, stay safe, stay in bed.”

Traitorous to the last I tell myself it’s better

To live a life that’s infinitely lesser

Because I can’t breathe and I want to go home

But what is a home if you still feel alone?

Poetry, Uncategorized, Writing

I’ve known you all my life

Grown used to the way your skin ripples and twists

How your face looks just like mine

Your claws digging into my throat as you hold me a little too tightly

The way you rub my back as I bend over and spill my guts

Telling me, well, what would be worse?

To survive this or to die?

Until it is easier to not, to not want things, to not want to try

You took and you stole and you filled me with chemicals

And like, people say you should let go of things that hurt you

But darling, what am I without you?

Who could I be?

Poetry, Uncategorized, Writing

April showers in the morning,

And her voice is slightly off-key as she sings

She drips her wet hair across the bedroom floor

And pulls faces without realising

I love her with her nose scrunched up and brow furrowed,

When it’s just me and her and the rest of the world is simply not allowed in

With weak sunshine peeking through the blinds,

I love her in the hazy light when she’s all soft edges

I watch her, awestruck, every single day

So wonderfully human, my April,

I hope she finds this and keeps it close

(Furthermore, I hope I find her, wherever she is, and keep her closer still.)